How To Clean An Office Chair No Matter The Material

November 11, 2022

By Workspace Resource

Because of the close quarters of employees, offices are a hotbed for bacteria. Your office chair is no exception. Studies show that there are 21,000 germs per square inch on chairs.

The chair you work in has just as much physical contact with you as your computer, desk, and other work tools. These high-traffic areas are breeding grounds for bacteria and must be kept clean to prevent the spread of illness across the company.

Keeping your office chair as clean and as germ-free as possible is crucial, not only for public health, but also because a good chair can last you for over ten years.

Basic Steps To Clean Your Office Chair

Read The Label

Check under the chair for the cleaning guide before getting to work. The chair's back is another common location for it. The manufacturer includes care recommendations tailored to the chair's material.

Manufacturers provide thorough cleaning instructions on the tag sewn onto the underside of most office chairs. If your chair comes with care tags, you may use them to learn how to clean it safely and effectively. Every one of the labels that come with office chairs has a cleaning code on it.

If a chair's label has the letter W in it, it suggests it may be disinfected with either water or cleaning solutions designed for use with water. If the label has an "A" on it, then you need to use a solvent that doesn't dissolve in water.

As the W/S label indicates, you may use either water or non-water-based cleaning agents. Finally, label X specifies that simply brushing or vacuuming the chair is acceptable maintenance. Before you start cleaning, make sure you read the label.

Wipe Down The Chair With A Dry Cloth 

Brushing off the dust and dirt from the chair's surface would be best before applying any cleaning or foam spray. You may do this by wiping the chair down with a dry towel; doing so will also help the cleaner penetrate the fabric and eliminate any embedded stains or smells.

Fabric upholstery requires extra attention since solid particles might be pushed further into the chair with too much power. Fabric upholstery requires careful rubbing to remove loose particles. If the solid particles are accidentally pushed into the fabric, the chair must be cleaned quickly to avoid the particles from becoming embedded.

Regular cleaning with a dry cloth can help your office chair last longer, no matter what it is made of. Use the wand attachment to remove dirt and dust that might otherwise settle into the chair's upholstery and hasten its demise.

Vacuum The Chair

Get rid of debris, fluff, or dust by vacuuming the whole chair, from the back to the wheels. Using a brush attachment, you can clean the surface debris and filth that has collected into the mesh office chair and its crevices. Use a can of compressed air or duster to get into those hard-to-reach places where your vacuum can't get to. Use low suction and a soft brush attachment while vacuuming a high-quality leather executive chair to protect the leather's surface.

After using your cleaning solution, give the chair one last vacuuming to remove any remaining dust or debris the product may have stirred up.

A white mesh office chair.

Wipe The Chair With The Proper Solvent

Try cleaning products in an inconspicuous area first. Instead of applying the solvent straight to the chair, it's better to gently pour it into a cloth and wipe it on. Manufacturers of upholstered furniture often provide care instructions on product tags to help customers choose the best approach to cleaning:

X - If the label says X, only have a professional clean it;

C - Upholstery with code C should be cleaned with an enzyme detergent since it shows that the fabric is Crypton;

SW/WS - Utilize either water-based or water-free solvents;

S - Stick to dry-cleaning solvents or water-free products;

W - Clean with water-based cleaning solutions. 

Allow The Chair To Dry

It's best to let the chair air out after use. The moisture will be absorbed into the fabric if you use a dry cloth. The chairs will still be wet, and mildew may develop if it is not dried thoroughly. Alternatively, you may use a hair dryer or another device that emits hot air to dry your chair, such as a dehumidifier. 

When people really need to clean their chair, they normally leave it out to air dry afterward. It's better to let it dry on its own. Putting the chair in the sun for a short time after washing it is the most efficient and quickest way to dry it.

Avoid leaving your furniture out in the sun for extended periods, however. If you have leather or “pleather,” the fabric can melt. Be sure you are only airing breathable fabrics outside. 

Clean Wheels

Generally, chair wheels are designed to be removed with little effort. You may remove the wheels on certain office chairs with a screwdriver. Clear the wheels of any dirt or debris by sliding a butter or putty knife through the gaps and beneath the wheel cover.

Get some tools and see if it helps get the jammed junk out. Get a pair of tweezers and remove any debris that appears trapped. Screwdrivers, bottle cutters, nail clippers, and scissors are also useful for clearing out hair and debris.

To remove any remaining particles, rub the wheels with a towel. Take care to clean the interior of the wheel cover and the outside. You may use a cotton swab to access the interior if you cannot get your finger through the cover's opening.

Water trapped within the wheel may lead to creaking and make dirt more likely to stay. To dry the wheels, use clean rags or paper towels. After drying, use the same tools to reattach the wheels to the chair or the base to the floor. Push your chair around the floor to ensure the wheels move easily.

Clean Arms

Cleaning a chair includes wiping down the armrests. Rub the armrest with the same solution and wipe it off with a moist towel. Clean with a damp cloth and the same cleaning solution you used on the upholstered part since it might transfer.

After that, spritz water over the chair's upholstery and armrest to clean them.

Put it somewhere sunny to dry. As a recommendation, lay it horizontally in the sunlight. Let the leftover water drain out from the chair in this manner.

Fabric office chairs need regular care, which may be as simple as using a vacuum cleaner to remove any grime or dust that has settled on the seat. The armrest should be cleaned with a moist cloth.

A brown leather office chair with metal arms.

Tips For Leather Office Chairs

Leather conditioners are great because they help keep the leather supple and moist, which prevents it from cracking.

Depending on the type of stains it has and the overall state of your office chair's leather, you may choose from various available conditioners. Some are made from natural ingredients, while others are manufactured. The lighter, more easily absorbed oil is best for leather furniture. There are several options for caring for your leather office chair, including leather lotions and waxes.

When cleaning the seat, use a leather cleaner made specifically for leather. Choose a cloth that won't scratch the surface, and don't use a product designed to clean leather in cars since it will be too harsh.

Tips For Wooden Accents

Apply a coat of polish to wood surfaces and wipe clean. Apply the polish with a gentle cloth, and then use a clean, dry towel to buff the chair.

Don't switch brands of polish after you've settled on one. If you combine various kinds of polish, you risk causing damage or dirt. Never use soap and water since it will make the grain rise.

You must pay special attention to maintaining the beauty of wood furniture. Unlike resin or plastic, wood may be easily damaged by using a cleaning agent that is inappropriate for your type of chair. It's important to note that most disinfectants are not suitable for use around wood.

Your wooden desks and chairs are fine to have in the workplace, however, purchase wood with an antibacterial treatment if you plan on using wood furniture in your workplace. You can protect the surfaces of many types of wood against bacteria and even certain viruses by using one of the many available finishes.

Tips For Removing Stains On Office Chairs

It's essential to exercise caution around your chair if you plan on eating or drinking anything. If anything spills, clean it up immediately. Take care of spills as soon as possible.

Dish soap and water can get rid of most stains on an office chair. You may clean most office chair fabrics with a sponge and some water.

In the same vein, rubbing alcohol is an effective stain remover. It's just as effective in cleaning office chairs as using soap and water or going waterless. It’s best if you don’t use it on any furniture covered with synthetic fabrics, however.

Consider making a water-based cleaner by combining water and soap. Clean leather furnishings using standard home cleaning agents.

A mild detergent soap may be your best bet. Distilled water, rather than tap water, is what you should use. The chlorine in the water supply might corrode the desk chair. Soapy suds indicate that the water and soap have been thoroughly combined.

Check a tiny section. You may proceed with the treatment if no surface damage or discoloration has appeared. The office chair should look spotless and smell new again.

Tips For Keeping Your Chair Clean

Maintaining a clean chair is essential. Almost every office chair benefits from a weekly vacuuming to remove the dust, filth, and grime that might collect over time. Select a vacuum attachment that won't scratch or harm your chair, and use as little suction as you can to avoid leaving any marks. Every week, use a clean cloth and go over your chair bases and arms.

Sometimes, even with regular cleanings, deep cleaning of your office chair is necessary. How you do this will be determined by the type of office chair you have.

The last piece of advice is not to have lunch at your desk and to invest in a protectant, a spray that will help cloth repel spills and leather retain its suppleness.

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